Breakstone Group — the independent investor and corporate communications firm — formed a subsidiary focusing on credit in today’s volatile and complex capital markets.

The new group, which will provide corporate credit ratings advisory services, will be headed by Filippe Goossens. The subsidiary’s main objective is to integrate fundamental analysis with an in-depth knowledge of a firm’s public debt structure, bank debt, credit rating, and risk issues.

This service will also provide specialized counseling to investor relations professionals concerned about risk management and the increasing impact of credit quality on equity valuations. Goossens brings the necessary analytical perspective to the group having started his career as a merchant banker for Swiss Bank Corp. before moving into a position as high yield credit analyst at both Moody’s Investor Service and JPMorgan Securities.

In addition to the newly appointed president, Breakstone Group has established a team of rating agency advisors for the new corporate credit ratings advisory business. The team includes Ron Neysmith, a former director at Citigroup’s ratings advisory unit; Todd Gray, most recently a director at Deutsche Bank’s ratings advisory group; Catherine Guinee, formerly an executive director, ratings advisory for Morgan Stanley; Robert Weiss, former global head of ratings advisory for Bank of America, and Adam Bliss, who worked with Weiss at BofA.

“There is clearly a need for independent analysis of credit issues in the market today,” said Kay Breakstone, chairman and CEO of Breakstone Group. “Our objective is to bring clarity to the methodologies behind credit ratings and to provide banks and broker dealers, private equity firms and companies with expert ratings advisory services.”

“Today it is essential to understand credit and its broad implications within both the equity and debt markets,” Goossens said. “As a fixed-income analyst with a number of years as an equity analyst, I understand what investors are looking for and how credit can impact equity valuations.”

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